ATTICA, Ohio – Two weeks ago it looked like Craig Mintz was going to take the win to open up the Ohio Sprint Speedweek at Attica Raceway Park. But, a part failure in the steering sent him to the pits after he led the first 13 laps. The Gibsonburg, Ohio driver was very dejected…another potential win had slipped away.
But, they say racers have to have short memories and Mintz, Attica’s 2012 champion of the O’Reilly Auto Parts 410 Sprints, put that disappointment behind him and came back Friday to lead all 30 laps to claim his first victory of the season on Kear’s Speed Shop Fan Appreciation Night. It wasn’t easy for Mintz as Danny Holtgraver closed late in the race and drove to Mintz’ inside as they drove to the checkers.
“It’s been like 21 months since we won a race. These guys behind me have dug hard and dug hard. We’ve run second a lot and I recently got married so we said that bridesmaid thing but I’ll tell you what that was getting old,” said Mintz beside his Real Geese Decoys/R2C Filters/KS Sales and Service/Erie Shore Propane/Design Graphics Group/Keller Chevrolet/Walby Construction/Story Equipment backed No. 09.
“I was missing my marks in the back majorly. It was everything I could do just to keep it there. We were really good early and just kind of started fading. It was just everything I could do to hold on. I was just waiting for them to throw that checkered,” added Mintz of his ninth career Attica victory.
Wayne, Ohio’s Jeff Babcock took the lead from Ryan Missler with just two laps to go and went on to score his first victory of the season at Attica in the Summit Racing Equipment UMP Late Models. It was Babcock’s fourth career Attica victory.
“I thought the top was going to be good and then those guys got going on the bottom and I thought I’d better move back down to the bottom. It was kind of rough and choppy down there but if you kept your foot plugged in her it went through it,” said Babcock beside his Best Performance Motorsports/Bulk Material Lift.com/Professional Drywall/Craig Miller Trucking backed No. 1.
“Ryan (Missler) runs good here…he’s always tough to beat. The bottom just kept getting better and better and better and the top was fading away…it was a bunch of marbles up there and that hurt him,” continued Babcock. “I have to thank Shane and Jennifer Halcomb for putting this team together.”
In the Foster’s Auto Body 305 Sprints Nate Dussel overcame some engine woes earlier in the night to lead all 25 laps to record his fourth win of the season at Attica. Dussel has eight feature wins total for 2013 including four at Fremont Speedway. It was the ninth win of his career at Attica.
“In hot laps we thought we had a blowed up motor but I have a great crew around me. They tore the motor apart even with Scott (Gressman) not here. They figured out what was wrong with it and got it back together and here we are,” said Dussel beside his Kylynn Manufacturing/Berrier Fabrication/Gressman Powersports/Conrad Transportation backed No. 1.
“I want to thank all the fans for sticking around tonight for our feature. You don’t know how much it means to the 305 guys and truck guys when you stick around,” continued Dussel. “I told myself I wasn’t going to let Jordan (Ryan) pass me on the bottom cause that’s where I figured he was going to be. There was a good chance I was going to mess myself up and Jordan was going to sneak by. But I tried the middle and it worked out.”
In the 15-lap Bob’s Machine Shop Dirt Truck feature, Fremont, Ohio’s John Ivy held off Daniel Roepke to score his second win of the season. Ivy also has six truck wins at Fremont Speedway this season.
“Charlie and Craig have this thing rolling pretty good right now,” said Ivy beside his Diversified Machining/ Level Performance/Sonny’s Machine Shop backed No. 00. “I’m just having a ball out there.”